The Southern Arizona All-Star Football Showcase head coaches and coordinators are getting set for the June 4 game at Tucson High School with practices commencing on May 31.
Former Cienega coach Nemer Hassey, now the principal at Mica Mountain High School, will coach one of the teams with new Mica Mountain coach Pat Nugent his offensive coordinator and CDO coach Dustin Peace working as the defensive coordinator. New Cienega coach Justin Argraves, who coached at Tucson High the last 10 years, will coach the secondary.
Salpointe legendary coach Dennis Bene is the coach of the other team and one of his staff members is Jay Dobyns, a former Sahuaro and Arizona receiver standout, who is now the head coach at Tanque Verde. Dobyns will be the offensive coordinator and fellow former Wildcat Robert Bonillas, coach at Desert View, will be the defensive coordinator.
Bene’s staff also includes Tanque Verde assistants John Williams (defensive backs coach), Matt Vinson (quarterbacks coach) and Jay’s son Jack Dobyns (wide receivers). Mica Mountain assistant Al Alexander, a longtime associate head coach with Bene at Salpointe, will be the offensive line coach. Salpointe assistant Zach Nevleff is the running backs coach and Cholla head coach Virgil Henderson will coach the defensive line. Bene’s brother Rocco, a longtime assistant of his at Salpointe, will coach the linebackers.
CDO quarterback Montana Neustadter, defensive end Chase Randall and defensive back Raife Anthony have applied as has Walden Grove placekicker Adrian Alvarado, all of them high-profile Class of 2021 players in Southern Arizona.
A draft for 50 players to a team will be held in April.
The event will also include spirit-squad members made up of high school seniors.
The impetus behind the event is many of Southern Arizona’s high school football and spirit-squad members had their seasons cut short because of COVID-19 protocol in December.
The game was originally slated for May 8, before the conclusion of the school year, but the Arizona Interscholastic Association voted to not sanction the event because of a bylaw that states school facilities and school personnel can not be utilized for an all-star event during the school year.
The City of Tucson, the Arizona Bowl, local school districts and the business community have come together to create one last football showcase event for Southern Arizona High School seniors.
The showcase will bring senior players from all over Southern Arizona for a week of practice with clinics led by coaches and players in Southern Arizona.
Kym Adair, executive director of the Arizona Bowl, said in a release, “The Organizing Committee has decided to move the event to the first week of June and are excited that this change will enable even more high school seniors the opportunity to participate in this celebration of football and showcase their skills to the community. We are hopeful that by June we will be able to invite the families of the players and spirit squad to watch their student-athletes play/perform in the Showcase from the stands.”
High school seniors interested in participating can find more information and applications at www.SouthernAZAllStars.com.
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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon.